Posted on: 18 July 2022
Fabric that is covered with a PVC coating is versatile and can be used for a number of things, but the way the PVC coating is formulated and applied affects those uses greatly. If you're planning to buy PVC coated fabric that you hope to use in a number of places for different reasons, you need to find fabric that is made to handle all of those situations. Among the top issues to look for are UV protection and how the fabric handles water.
Verify That at Least One Side Can Be Exposed to UV Rays
Unless you know for sure that the PVC coated fabric you get will never ever see the light of day or be near a door or window, make sure what you get has a protective coating against UV rays on at least one side. (And make sure you can tell which side that is without anyone pointing it out to you.) UV rays are sneaky and can even curve around obstacles to an extent. They can come in through windows and open doors. And if the fabric will be outside, it definitely needs a coating to protect it from UV rays. The rays can cause colors to fade and materials to degrade more quickly than usual.
Verify Whether the Fabric Is Water-Resistant, Waterproof, or None
The PVC coating can make the fabric water-resistant or waterproof, depending on the specific formulation of the coating. It's essential that you find out what the fabric is, as you don't want to buy fabric that you plan to use a lot only to find you can't use it outside in the rain. And, you want to be sure you know, specifically, whether the fabric is totally waterproof or merely water-resistant. If you want to make tents out of the fabric, for example, you need it to be waterproof so nothing leaks through in very heavy rain.
Watch out for Reflecting Light and Baking Heat
As tough as PVC coated fabric is, it does have its limits. Intense heat is one of these; exposure to temperatures that are too hot can cause the PVC coating to break down. Even if you don't see the effects on the fabric itself, the fabric will not guard against UV rays and the rays' damage as well, and it may no longer be totally waterproof or very resistant. Keep the fabric out of areas where it could essentially bake, such as a closed-up vehicle on a hot day, where temperatures inside the vehicle can soar quickly. Also, when you place the fabric somewhere either for storage or actual use, watch out for reflecting light off glass buildings and windows. That reflecting light can be very hot.Share